Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Robert Oppenheimer

Today's genius is Robert Oppenheimer, pictured above on the left. Oppenheimer was responsible for leading the team of scientists at the Manhattan Project for the development of the first atomic bomb. It would be unfair to call him the "inventor" of the atomic bomb. The bomb was not so much something that was invented as it was "realized". Based on work by physicists like Einstein and others in the early 1900's, it was "realized" that a small amount of matter contained a huge amount of energy, and if that huge amount of energy was released incredibly powerful bombs could be made. Oppenheimer was the one responsible for taking the equations, and turning them into something that goes "boom".  Like the bomb or not, there is no denying the genius that was required to realize it.


  1. cool booties the military guy is wearing...for protection from radiation?

    It is also reassuring that rebarb can withstand atomic blasts! Or is that all that is left from a cement collum?

    I guess the lack of comments = Oppenheimer's lack of general popularity?

    sorry I just posted 3 questions instead of a comment

  2. I like your comment regarding the bomb being realized. I had never thought of it that way before. A very interesting week!

  3. The "military guy" is General Leslie Groves who led the Manhattan Project--Oppenheimer's boss.

  4. I think it safe to say that while Oppenheimer "realized" the bomb the true genius was in the engineering and fabrication of the device(s) and that was Gen Groves job.
    Like most smart people he was strong willed and often prickly, but he was able to pull the job off because he was able to listen and learn from others.
    Also, before his assignment to head the Manhattan Project he built the Pentagon, at that time the world's largest office building.

  5. I wonder- did Oppenheimer really give the Soviets information on atomic bombs?